La Dramstars – another eye on the suburbs

La voyante, 45,71x26,46 cm, 2013

The suburban housing estates (in French ‘la cité’) are always a contentious issue for the society. Whereas they are involved in many discussions, the situation does not seem to really change and on the contrary appears to feed many clichés on some populations, not helping their proper integration. Indeed, this is the same stereotypes we see and hear again and again on the media, with an over-representation of the same anecdotes in all politics speeches, fantasized on documentaries as well as television reports. For all these reasons, the cité, especially at night, is evoking a troubling/disturbing imaginary.
However, this picture can be positively shade with the use of photography to reveal a divergent look. This is an excellent medium to capture things unsaid and the anxiety underlying within a scene, to symbolize some situations and to translate a whole event or era in a single moment.

The black and white and sometimes colorful pictures of Dramstars denote an interesting detachment of the autor from cité’s scenes but at the same time keep a strong relationship between identity and memory.  These photographs were taken with a multi-disciplinary approach, melting up analytics, documentary and art to better question the cité’s stereotypes: they are illustrating the profuse life of the suburbs at day light just as well as the fixed emptiness of the streets at night. Alternatly striking, touching or intriguing, these photografs offer a unique eye on the cité.

Banlieue.... En caisse, 45,86x25,08 cm, 2013

Le quartier a des yeux, 46,08x30,72 cm, 2013

Why did you chose photography as a support for your art ?

Photography has a powerful ascendant on people when it deals with transmission. With time going on and first-hand technology becoming more and more wide-spread (even on your mobile phone !), I privilege the pleasure of capturing moments compared to the desire of really transfering a message. I have always been keen on photography, however I professionalized thanks to relatives who bought me a decent camera in 2011. With the goal to progress, I looked for professional critics and then showed my work to some cultural centers. I participate among others projects to the creation of with other professional photographers: la femme plurielle, à tort et à corps (the plural forms of women, wrongly and physically).

Asseyons nous..., 40,96x30,72 cm, 2012

La princesses du ghetto, 26,25x40,41 cm, 2013 

What are the main technics you like working with ?

I am still enhancing my work with film cameras for day-light pictures, so generally, I use digital camera, especially for night shooting. I mainly compose with the model long-pause and movement: this helps creating this fuzzy effect and perception of movement, in opposition to the staid aspect of concrete and iron. Finally, I like playing with different exposures to obtain sepia, bluish or old-fashioned results.

Désolation, 46,03x30,79 cm, 2014

CDPDV, 44,40x27,28 cm, 2013

Banlieue la chapelle Paris I, 39,98x21,38 cm, 2012

How did come up with snapping the cité?

I want to show the world I know. I was born in a cité and I know most of the people on my photographs. I want to highlight the multiple identities of the suburbs. By showing real evidence/testimony of the cité’s life and by re-humanizing people that are living in, I want to stop with the frighten aspect of the suburbs which is to me a skewed reflect but still in most people mind. Pictures allow to create a sociologic discussion via impacting visuals and to break stereotypes by presenting moments that are simply unique.

Sans titre 5, 46,08x30,72 cm, 2013

Tâche, 2013, 44,87x26,34 cm

Dramstars’ photographic work, both artistic and social-oriented, proposes a personal but powerful vision of the routine rhythm in the cité. As it is appreciated from the inside, it offers a real sociologic and aesthetic interest. That’s why I strongly advise the reader to take a look at the artist’s page and discover more about this work.




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